September 20, 2011

Good weeks lead to good years

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Here's a time management & goal setting system I learned 20 years ago: Good Weeks. 

Too often, we measure our progress yearly (annual resolutions and goals) or quarterly (the 90 day treadmill).  The result is often cram-fests at the end of the year or quarter to meet a goal that's "all made up" in the first place.  Those time lines are usually too long to correct, once the finish line is in sight. 

When I was working for Bob May (Pat Summerall Productions) in Dallas, he taught me a simple weekly success system that I use to this day.  His motto was: "Good weeks add up to good months - and good months add up to a great year." 

Each week is a small enough slice to conquer.  Monday and Tuesday have metrics that 'load up the funnel' to produce a successful week.  Wednesday is your review window, where you figure out if you are ahead or behind.  Thursday is the day of finishing things, leaving Friday for clean up or catch up. 

Your weekend means more in this system, because the whole process starts over again the following Monday.  Unlike other methods (annual, quarterly), the finish line is really Friday - so you are less likely to treadmill through your weekends and burn out.  Sure, it's like a never-ending-race, this weekly system, but then again, so is any other system. 

Over the years, I've learned that this weekly focus makes us prone to finishing projects and closing deals with a sense of urgency (by Friday!).  It starts on Monday, and predictably comes to a crescendo by week's end.  A good month is usually comprised of three good weeks (on goal).  A good quarter is a few great months and a good year can be comprised of a few good quarters.  It's all about the highly successful weeks and the shortened time lines for success that we march to. 

Note: The best way to live by this system is to spend some quiet time on Sunday evening or early Monday AM, plotting out what the successful week looks like and how it intersects with established business goals from financial to operational.  As you 'rehearse the coming week,' you'll find it much less overwhelming than trying to visualize success during a more protracted period.  

So get crackin', it's only Tuesday, this week's going to be great!

 


Comments

Commentor

Going back to basics. Love this post. It is like how we teach our kids in school. The tasks are much more manageable and still work towards the ultimate goal.

Commentor

personally I broke that down to good days add to good week. Every morning I make a TODO list for the day.One for personal and one for work. Then through the day I check things of it. The sense of progress is truly exhilarating. When I am not able to strike the notepad clean, I come back and do a retrospective and see how to get at predicting my own work. Has made me better little by little


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